Google buys virtual-currency start-up, Jambool reports that Google has bought Jambool, a company that makes a platform for managing online payments for virtual goods sold on gaming and social networking sites. Launched in 2006, the start-up manufactures a product called Social Gold, which lets other sites build virtual-currency infrastructures. Google runs its own PayPal-like transaction platform, Google Checkout, and may have been looking for a virtual-currency system to complement it. What do you make of Google’s acquisition?

Learn more: Google buys virtual-currency start-up
Google Buys Online Currency Management Company Jambool

Five ways social media is impacting customer service

We ran across a blog post over at that outlines five innovative ways that social media is impacting the customer service world. Guy Tweedale is Senior Vice President, European Operations of Jacada writes:

1. It levels the playing field
2. Makes consumers more informed
3. Far less frustrated consumers
4. Authenticity in customer experience
5. Customer service is (finally) a higher priority in the boardroom

We’ve seen in case studies how one customer who “tweets” their complaint can impact the entire image of an organization. How is your company using social media to not only connect with customers but ensure that customer experience is stellar both off and online?

TMRE Poll Results:Do you think the market research industry as a whole has embraced social media as a legitimate means to gain consumer insight?

The first TMRE Poll closed last week, and you answered the question: Do you think the market research industry as a whole has embraced social media as a legitimate means to gain consumer insight?

And the results are:

Verizon Asks Less of Their Customers and More from Their Technology

Join Judith K. Ferrell, Group Manager, Verizon Online Support & Customer Service, for her presentation, “The Art of Personalization in Online Support: Verizon Asks Less of Their Customers and More from Their Technology” at Customer UNinterrupted at 2:20pm on Monday, October 25th.

Learn how to improve your customer’s self-service experience through personalization. Take the work away from your customers and make technology do the work for you! Know who your customer is and provide support that is specific to their products and services. We know a lot about our customers – let’s use this
knowledge to simplify their self-service experience and raise customer satisfaction.

‘ Learn the steps to achieve personalization in support
‘ Learn the tools used for personalized self-service
‘ Learn how to create a seamless customer experience
‘ Learn how to measure your success

We hope to see you in Orlando

Save $300! Register for Customer UNinterrputed by Friday, August 13!

Facebook Ad Sales to Hit $1.2 Billion This Year reports that Facebook will soon it $1.2 billion dollars in ad sales. A new estimate from eMarketer says the company will book $1.285 billion in global advertising alone this year, almost double the estimated $665 million the company took in last year. That figure doesn’t include Facebook’s so-called virtual currency trade, which would nonetheless account for a fraction of the company’s overall business. Edmund Lee writes, even though many in the industry bandy about “social” as a wide-ranging category, Facebook is the only significant player in the space, and its clear supremacy has triggered more speculation over a potential IPO, once thought to be a possibility in 2010.

Any surprises here? Let us know!

A Look Back at TMRE 2009:Managing Knowledge:Cohabitation: Rethinking the Client/ Consultant Relationship

The Market Research Event 2010 is taking place this November 8-10, 2010 in San Diego, California. Every Friday leading up to the event, we’ll be recapping one session from The Market Research Event 2009.

Cohabitation: Rethinking the Client/ Consultant Relationship

Tina Brogdon, Psyma International
Laura Bernier, Kraft Foods

When working with a client and a vendor, it’s important to understand roles. Client brings a deep, rich understanding of the brand. The supplier helps keep the project objected throughout the whole process. A partner helps to keep things on an organized timetable. The vendor needs to dig deep and figure out what has to come out from the research.

Laura was in charge of conducting the ethnography and so she was responsible in choosing a team. There were participants with a wide role of functions. The team was divided by market and industry so that they would have a clearer understanding on the research. Having a cross-functional team was vital in collecting the right information.

When the field work happens, make sure to debrief after each session. The reason behind this is to hear the stories because everyone has a different role in the process. Igniting the spark with teams is crucial because at times they can be working for 12 hours so snacks will be important in keeping staff motivated.


- The vendor needs to learn the history & business in a short period of time
- Tight timelines
- Communicating across a large team can be difficult and time consuming
- Senior management is involved
- Objectives and consumer targets cannot change during research
- Projects can be long

Usually clients fall in the trap that we are the consumers, but we are not. Make sure to remove these biases.

Here’s a brief clip from the presentation below.

Delta Launches First Airline Social Media ‘Ticket Window’

In a press release statement, Delta Airlines has introduced the first social media “Ticket Window” that will allow passengers to book flights directly from Facebook and other social media channels.

Delta’s Ticket Window allows any of Facebook’s 500 million users to complete a full travel booking using a dedicated “tab” at without navigating to Delta plans to expand its Ticket Window to other sites, including online banner ads to allow full booking capabilities within the airline’s advertisements.

As a social media aficionado, would you consider using Facebook to book travel? DM us on Twitter @community20 with your answers!

Build Your Bridge to a Successful Career in Market Research with Future Market Research Leaders

The Future Market Research Leaders Education Series, brought to you by The Market Research Event and faculty from the University of Notre Dame, will arm you with the tools you need to excel in the field of market research. This two day course provides a comprehensive introduction to the fundamentals of market research and how they are best utilized across best-in-class corporations. It is co-located with The Market Research Event this coming November 7-9, 2010, in San Diego, California.

Some of the sessions you can attend led by heads of research from some of today’s top companies:

  • Successful Research Requires a Problem with Capital One
  • Creating a Research mindset within an Organization with Frito Lay
  • Organizing a Research Function with Plantronics
  • Analyzing, Interpreting, and Presenting Research Results with The Coca-Cola Company
  • Working with Internal End Users with YRC Worldwide

For more information on our The Future Market Research Leaders Education Series, visit our webpage.

Social media close behind 911 in US emergencies

In a recent study by The American Red Cross, responders said using social media outlets like Facebook would be a second choice if they faced an emergency. The CBC reports that nearly 70 per cent of those surveyed said emergency responders should be monitoring social media sites to send help quickly, and nearly half believed an agency is probably already responding to any urgent request posted. Of those surveyed, 74% said they expected help to come less than an hour after their tweet or Facebook post.

What do you make of the survey results? Have you or someone one you know asked for help through social networks?

Social media 2nd choice after 911 in crisis poll

Register by this Friday to Save $300 on Linkage Strategies 2010

This Friday is your last chance to reserve your place and save $300 off Linkage Strategies 2010.

What’s new for 2010? A 3-part, structured agenda to help you understand what matters most to your customers AND to your bottom line:

* Holistic VoC Integration: Capture and Integrate Data Across Disparate Sources
* Linkage Strategies: Connect Customer Data to Business Process Data
* Action Planning: Implement Actions that Improve Customer Experience and Business Results

For 2010 we are pleased to bring you 3 of the leading minds in linkage strategies and analytics.

For the full agenda and details on how to save $300 off the standard registration rates, please visit:

Drive Business Performance: How Leaders Enable a Culture of Intelligent Execution


Learn about the competitive advantage experienced by organizations that create and manage a “Culture of Performance”. Click here for more…

Earning Customer Loyalty and Bottom-Line Results through an Enterprise-Wide, Integrated Customer Relationship Strategy


Today, earning loyalty takes an enterprise-wide, integrated strategy. Is your organization set up to earn it? Click here for more…

Lego Creates a Holistic Platform to Capture Cross-Channel Data and Deliver Improved Customer Insights at Granular and Global Levels


Discover the value of real-time data in saving at-risk consumers and increasing NPS. Click here for more…

Great News!

Linkage is now part of Customer World. The co-location of 3 unique customer-centric events. Customize your experience and attend 1, 2 or all 3… it’s YOUR World!

Customer UNinterrupted
* NACCM * Linkage Strategies 2010

We hope to see you in Orlando this October.